I explained to my children that this is where the devil wants us to end up after going through intense suffering. He wants to beat us up so badly that we are left believing that everything is bad, including God. He wants to fill us with despair—the state of being where one no longer has any hope, any belief that anything good could ever happen again. It’s easy to see why many people do fall into this sort of despair. Life is hard.
I was recently sharing with my children the story about the dwarfs in C.S. Lewis’ final book in The Chronicles of Narnia. The dwarfs huddle in fear inside a stable, and the children ask Aslan, the Great Lion, if there’s anything he can do to soothe the frightened dwarfs. Aslan proceeds to speak comfort to them, but all they can hear is growling. He magically creates a delightful feast of food and puts it right in front of them, but all they can taste is what they’d expect to find inside a stable—straw and hay.
Aslan - Children - Dwarfs - Anything - Thing
Aslan then explains to the children that he can help the dwarfs no further because they are so untrusting, so unwilling to conceive of anything being good, that they cannot perceive any good thing he might do for them as actually good. They are imprisoned, only in their minds, Aslan said, but it is nevertheless a very real imprisonment.
My daughter asked why the dwarfs had become this way, and I explained that a lot of really mean people had come and taken over Narnia and done a lot of terrible things (for more info, check out Book 7, The Last Battle). Things had gotten so bad that the dwarfs started to believe that everyone in the whole world was mean and bad—they got to...
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